Articles and reports from the ITES squad.
Eating NAFTA: Trade, Food Policies and the Destruction of Mexico
By Sarah Westlake with Helen Beichel 3/29/19
Alyshia Gálvez spoke to members about how changes in policy following NAFTA have fundamentally altered one of the most basic elements of life in Mexico—sustenance.
NAFTA 2.0: Will It Make It Through Congress?
By Willy Naess, 1/17/19
With Democrats now in control of the House, expect big political changes in 2019. But what does it mean for international trade?
NAFTA 2.0: A Look Into the New Rules for ISDS and Regulatory Agency
By Bart DeCoursy with Sarah Westlake 6/12/18
Investor State Dispute Settlements, have long been in the crosshairs of trade justice organizations. We take a look at the new rules.
The U.S. Should Insist on a “Sunset Clause” in NAFTA Renegotiations
By Chris Marshall 8/16/18
This provision would require the leadership of all three countries to make an affirmative decision to sign up for another five years.
Fair Trade Tea, Tariffs and Refugees
By Willy Naess, Sarah Westlake and Susan Metz 7/5/18
Members of the ITES squad got together to discuss Fair Trade, answer questions about tariffs and reflect on fair trade and fleeing masses.
Civil Society Priorities in the NAFTA Renegotiation
By Helen Beichel with Susan Metz 4/26/18
The Coop joined 1,043 other civic organizations in signing a letter to members of Congress outlining what a fair and just NAFTA would look like for the peoples of North America.
Recent News on International Trade
By Bart DeCoursy and Susan Metz 3/29/18
Ongoing re-negotiation of NAFTA, tariffs to be collected when steel and aluminum from certain nations are imported into the U.S.; and the TPP getting signed…without the US
Congress Should Reclaim Its Authority in Global Trade Negotiations
By Chris Marshall with Sarah Westlake 11/9/17
In 2015, Congress passed the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) and thereby ceded much of its authority to manage international trade relations to the executive branch.
A Report from the Latest International Trade Education Community Dialogue
By Sarah Westlake with Willy Naess 10/12/17
Labor rights, the environment and global warming, democracy and sovereignty, food safety, intellectual property rights, and ISDS were just a few items on the agenda.
Protect Workers’ Rights and the Environment, Not Investors’ Profits. No ISDS
By Susan Metz 9/14/17
International trade is established. Globalization is a fact. International rules, codified in legal agreements, formalizes the way goods and services are traded among countries.
NAFTA, Food and Our Coop
By Helen Beichel and Sarah Westlake 8/31/17
North Americans enjoy a broad availability and variety of fresh fruits and vegetables often picked by Mexican farm workers with increasingly lower wages.
Beginning NAFTA 2 Negotiations
By Susan Metz 8/17/17
NAFTA 2 negotiations are scheduled to start on August 17. Although the breadth of objectives is impressive, it tells little about the administration’s priorities.
Fair Trade: What’s It All About?
By Willy Naess 7/17/17
We sell a variety of fairly traded items, and there’s a good chance you’ve seen some of them on the shelves. What exactly are the standards?
Leaked draft of Letter to Congress Reveals Administration’s Aims in Redrafting NAFTA
By Bart DeCoursy and Chris Marshall 06/22/17
Will Trump follow through on his campaign promise to bring back American jobs by renegotiating NAFTA in favor of the American workforce?
ITES Squad is Made Permanent at the April GM
By Chris Marshall 05/11/16
The authorization of the ITES squad was voted on at the May GM and the votes are in! The ITES squad is now permanent. Thanks to all who supported us.
How Free Trade Became a Key Issue in the 2016 Election
By Chris Marshall 12/8/16
How free trade became a key issue, and how it continues to be of vital importance and interest to member if the Coop.
The Presidential Hopefuls, and The Trans Pacific Partnership
By Sarah Westlake 10/27/16
Exploring the positions of the candidates on trade, how they got there, and what we can expect from whoever takes office.
An Explanation and Summary of FTA, TPP, and ISDS
By Susan Metz 10/13/16
A comprehensive and easy to understand these confusing acronyms, what’s behind it all, and what it means for you. This edition of the gazette also contains several letter in support of ITES on the letters page.
The TPP Would Be Ineffective as a Geopolitical Instrument
By Chris Marshall 21/7/16
For many, the Trans-Pacific Partnership—the TPP— sounds simply pro-trade. Since trade is a good thing, many still wonder about all the fuss. ITES keeps members informed on what awaits us, should TPP be passed.
Breaking News: Individual and Collective Action Is Essential to Defeat the TPP
By Susan Metz 7/7/16
The latest roundup of news from across the world about TPP- that you will not get from standard news outlets, and a call to action- March for a clean energy revolution.
Some History of Free Trade and an Update on TPP
By Susan Metz with Chris Marshall 6/23/16
Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) are the rules—the financial and legal structures—that enable investors to minimize the risk that they might be disappointed. “Free” refers to lack of restriction.
Food Safety, Security and Sovereignty
By Sarah Westlake with Susan Metz 6/9/16
Free trade agreements (seek to put corporations, not elected governments, in control of our food. These corporations, driven by their bottom lines, resist regulation as they prioritize profits over the health and safety of living things in the food chain.
Why You Should Care About the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the TPP
By Gerardo Renique and Bart DeCoursy 5/12/16
Did you know that investor-states, such as Pfizer and Monsanto, would be seen as legal entities on par with nation-states, such as Singapore, New Zealand or the United States?
The Line Waiters Gazette, ITES Squad report
By Susan Metz 4/14/16
Detailed breakdown of the Republican and Democratic presidential candidates’ positions on the Trans Pacific Partnership.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Will Worsen the Effects of Climate Change
By Willy Naess and Chris Marshall. 3/17/16
Discussing how TPP will worsen the effects of climate change, and a brief summary of presidential candidates’ positions on TPP.
195 Countries Adopt Historic Paris Agreement, While Pending Free Trade Deals Threaten to Increase Climate Change
by Eliza Hetterly. 1/21/16
International trade agreements like TTP and TTIP will threaten the ability of nations to fulfil their commitments to the Paris Agreement on stopping the effects of climate change. It highlights the potential for the agreements’ Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions to severely weaken those commitments.
Myths and Facts About China and the TPP
by Bart DeCoursy and Gerardo Renique. 12/10/15
Dissects several common arguments about TPP’s ability to transform the global economy in the face of China’s growing economic strength.
Say No to TPP
by Susan Metz 11/26/15
Describes reasons to oppose TPP and provides examples of collective action to prevent TPP from being enacted.
Latest updates on the TPP and information on a Campaign to Make NYS TPP Free
by Susan Metz. 11/12/15
Breaking down the timeline and process of how TPP will make its way through Congress, from the moment the agreement is signed by the president to an eventual vote in the Senate and House of Representatives. It describes some of the possible hurdles the TPP faces from lawmakers on across the political spectrum.
What does the Trans-Pacific Partnership mean For Workers?
by Eliza Hetterly. 10/15/15
Describes the potential effects that TPP will have on workers, both in America and abroad. It summarizes the arguments made by David Unger, of the Murphy Institute for Worker Education at CUNY, at a public forum on the TPP in August 2015.
The Coop’s Impact on the TPP Debate Across New York State
by Raul Rothblatt. 10/1/15
Describes the movement, led by New York state senator Jesse Hamilton, to push New York’s state senators to pass a resolution that would make New York state a “TPP-free zone.”
Nothing Fair About “Free Trade” Agreements
by Dan Wiley with Willy Naess. 9/17/15
Summarizes the arguments about TPP made by speakers at the August 20 Town Meeting on TPP, held at the Park Slope United Methodist Church. Speakers included Joel Kupferman of the National Lawyers Guild, New York Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, Community Coordinator Dan Wiley, State Assemblywoman JoAnne Simon, State Senators Velmanette Montgomery and Jesse Hamilton, Eric Weltman of Food and Water Watch New York, Stephanie Low of the Sierra Club, and others.
Trans-Pacific Partnership in Limbo
by Susan Metz. 8/20/15
Describes the failure of TTP negotiators to reach an agreement at the July talks in Maui and what this failure means for the future of TPP.
The ‘Fast-Track’ Trade Promotion Authority Bill: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Could Be the Most Harmful Trade Pack Ever
ITES squad report 8/6/15
Explains why TPP would be the “most harmful trade pack ever,” summarizing its potential effects on the environment, food safety, and access to pharmaceuticals.
TPP Is Heating Up
by Willy Naess. 6/25/15
Describes the status of TPP in June, 2015, following Congress’ initial refusal to grant the president Trade Promotion Authority, also known as Fast Track.
TPP and the Fast Track
by Susan Metz. 5/28/15
Summarizes the fight in Congress over passage of Trade Promotion Authority, also known as Fast Track. It describes the testimony that Coop members Susan Metz and Ann Garvin gave at hearings on the New York City Council’s Resolution 576, which made New York City a “TPP Free Zone.”
Act Now on International Trade
by Susan Metz. 4/30/15
Describes the mission of the Coop’s International Trade Education Squad and provides examples of collective actions that people can take to prevent passage of TPP in Congress.
Investor-State Dispute Settlement Discussed at the Public International Forum on April 25
by Bart DeCoursy. 4/16/15
Describes several examples of past court cases in which the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions in NAFTA were used to undermine regulations that protected the environment and public health. It warns that ISDS provisions in TPP will have similar effects.
How Fast Tracked Trade Deals Will Redesign Our Food Landscape—
And Not in a Good Way!”
by Alison Rose Levy. 4/2/15
Explains how Trade Promotion Authority works and warns that TPP will have a harmful effect on food safety in the United States.
What is the TPP?
by Willy Naess. 3/5/15
An introduction to the TPP and explains why free trade is a controversial issue.
Letter to Brooklyn Representatives: Vote NO on Trade Agreement Fast Track
by Susan Metz, Vicky Castillo, and Willy Naess. 11/27/14
Includes the letter that the Coop sent to all Brooklyn House Representatives asking them to vote “no” on granting the president Trade Promotion Authority, also known as Fast Track.